I have used nVidia and ATI/Radeon video adapters in various computers over the years. I find that ATI/Radeon are by far the best and most compatible adapters for Linux for the types of things I want to do.
The nVidia drivers I have found to be sadly lacking in overall support and functionality. This is a direct result of the fact that the advanced drivers are closed source and the Open Source nouvaeu driver developers have no access to the hardware documentation.
ATI, on the other hand, has provided much more cooperation in the way of documentation to the Open Source community and the ATI/Radeon drivers are far more capable than the nVidia drivers.
After recently spending a few days fighting to get the proprietary nVidia drivers running on my primary high-end workstation with a high-end nVidia adapter so I could use the OpenGL desktop effects, I gave up and purchased a new, high-end ATI/Radeon video adapter. After installing the ATI/Radeon hardware, I was immediately able to configure and use those effects.
The built-in ATI hardware also works fine on my Thinkpad laptop.
So my recommendation, at least for now, is to use ATI/Radeon display adapters rather than the nVidia. I plan to avoid nVidia hardware in the future.